Other Boardgames That Didn’t Quite Make the “To-Be-Turned-Into-Movies” Cut

Posted: May 9, 2012 in Pop Culture
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Battleship is coming out on May 18th.  If you didn’t know this, you must either be living in a Ted Kaczynski-style shack in some remote corner of the Montana foothills or in solitary confinement in a maximum security facility.  What you may or may not have been able to tell, based on the 1,000,000,000,000 ads/corporate tie-ins/”most Battleshippy moment of the NBA Playoffs”, is that this movie is allegedly based on the board game. 

At this point, you may be saying to yourself, “Huh?” and “What?”  Or you may have even progressed to the point of “So what?”  But the reason I find this to be such a fascinating re-imagining of a game that I used to play in the 5th grade is that the movie looks literally nothing like the old Hasbro game involving gray ships and calling out grid-like commands like you were participating in a war-like game of Bingo.  (*Author’s note: The pegs that held the ships in place would inevitably break off and leave your submarine or battleship listing hard to port.)

In fact, the movie appears to have jumped ship (*Author’s note: I’m sorry.) to a completely different, seemingly incoherent mix of aliens, Liam Neeson, and leftover computer graphics that had to be edited out of the Transformers movies due to time constraints.

This isn’t the first boardgame to get transformed into a feature motion picture, either.  The movie Clue, which I used to watch every Halloween while gorging myself on mini-bags of M&Ms and candy corn, immediately comes to mind here.  So we at Burnpoetry decided that we should do some digging and see if there weren’t any other lost scripts about converting some of our favorite childhood board games into movies.

Here’s what we discovered.

Chutes and Ladders

An action/adventure that originally starred Bruce Willis as Virgil Jax, the burned out, chainsmoking ex-cop that has found himself working in the bowels of an industrial ladder manufacturing plant.  One night, after stumbling drunkenly back to the plant where he’s contemplating suicide, Jax witnesses the CEO of the corporation murder one of his underlings.

Horrified, Jax watches in a boozy stupor as the boss presses a button on his desk and the body of the victim is pushed into a giant chute.  The body disappears and Jax makes a break for it.  Rejected by the inevitably crooked and/or incompetent local cops, Jax launches his own secret investigation and discovers that the entire plant is sitting atop a massive catacomb of chutes used for transporting human bodies. 

And there’s a bunch of aliens, too.  Lots of aliens.


A psychedelic fantasy epic which was originally to be helmed by Oliver Stone, this film starred an ensemble cast.  Princess Lolly was to be played by Sharon Stone, Gloppy by John Candy, Lord Licorice by Dolph Lundgren, and King Kandy by Harrison Ford.

Princess Lolly is trapped in an arranged marriage to a man she doesn’t love and stuck in a life she didn’t choose.  Wandering through a privileged, but empty, life she finds solace in riding her gingerbread horse and snorting lines of pixie stick powder.  One day she overindulges, nearly dying of a tragic overdose and/or diabetic shock, but is saved by a young, strapping Mr. Mint.

Determined that this is fate’s way of freeing her from her bonds, Lolly and Mint abscond to the Candy Cane forest where they encounter all kinds of tooth-rotting monsters and Willy-Wonka-on-even-more-acid kinds of scenery.

While the lovers narrowly avoid capture it becomes clear that one thing and one thing only will save their new-found love: an impending alien invasion.


(*Author’s note: I know. . .not technically a board game.)

A sinister horror film which was originally set to star a young Mark Ruffalo as Phillip Hockney, an up-and-coming medical corporation executive.  Giving more value to the mountains of cash he was seeking to earn than to who he had to step on in his journey to the top, he is careless in his personal life; cavalier with women and consumed with profit margin.

However, the tables turn on Hockney as he finds himself pulled into an elaborate web of deceit and torture by some of the very people he had so heedlessly cast aside.  With a company that spares no expense on corporate jet-setting, but saves millions by using human pawns to test out new medical procedures, Hockney realizes that his willful disregard for humanity has a cost.  And what a cost indeed.

Will Hockney realize the error of his ways in time to save himself and, indeed, save his very soul?  Or will he find himself, naked and alone, with a giant red nose, hearing the fateful words: “Please remove the broken heart.”  Will he survive the icy hands of the reaper as they descend upon him for. . .Operation?  Also, the people attacking him?  They’re definitely aliens.


  1. Andrew says:

    What about Weapons and Warriors? It will be directed by Michael Bay, starring (blank). It won’t matter who they cast, because they’re just going to get blown up by cannons and giant crossbows anyway.

    • Burnpoetry says:

      Well played, Andrew. I used to love that game. At least 25-30 minutes of the movie should be spent in a montage, showing people looking for the cannonballs under the family couch. That’s where our always ended up.

      • Andrew says:

        A lot of Christmas ornaments got destroyed playing that game. But it was all done in the line of duty, so I think it’s acceptable.

  2. ben says:

    Guess Who

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s